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Cryptozoic! by [Brian W. Aldiss]

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Cryptozoic! Kindle Edition

3.5 out of 5 stars 20 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Brian W. Aldiss was born in Norfolk, England, in 1925. Over a long and distinguished writing career, he published award-winning science fiction (two Hugo Awards, a Nebula Award, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award); bestselling popular fiction, including the three-volume Horatio Stubbs saga and the four-volume the Squire Quartet; experimental fiction such as Report on Probability A and Barefoot in the Head; and many other iconic and pioneering works, including the Helliconia Trilogy. He edited many successful anthologies and published groundbreaking nonfiction, including a magisterial history of science fiction (Billion Year Spree, later revised and expanded as Trillion Year Spree). Among his many short stories, perhaps the most famous was “Super-Toys Last All Summer Long,” which was adapted for film by Stanley Kubrick and produced and directed after Kubrick’s death by Steven Spielberg as A.I. Artificial Intelligence. Brian W. Aldiss passed away in 2017 at the age of 92. 

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00J3EU37O
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Open Road Media Sci-Fi & Fantasy (April 1, 2014)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ April 1, 2014
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 2406 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 216 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    3.5 out of 5 stars 20 ratings

Customer reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
3.5 out of 5
20 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on July 26, 2013
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4 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on February 22, 2013
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2 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on October 11, 2012
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Reviewed in the United States on September 23, 2014
4 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on July 12, 2011
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4.0 out of 5 stars Chronological and Psychological mindblow
By 2theD on July 12, 2011
My eighth Aldiss book to-date and I haven't been disappointed in any of his novels yet (while the collection in [[ASIN:0722111029 The Saliva Tree]] was great, the other two of [[ASIN:0881846171 Last Orders]] and [[ASIN:0879970294 The Book of Brian Aldiss]] left something to be desired for). Cryptozoic is pretty trippy, more so than [[ASIN:0571246508 Earthworks]]. But why else would you read Aldiss? He's got BIG ideas!

Cryptozoic is hard to type out. Also, it's kind of hard to figure out. Near the end of the twenty-first century, time travel via the mind became a reality. The body would stay in 2093 but the mind would whiz back to the Jurassic era, Devonian era or even the Holocene epoch if you've got the talent. Prohibitively expensive, mind time travel is reserved for vacationers wanting to visit the mind-colony in the Jurassic era or ride their mind-motorcycles through the ages. More importantly, a research institute sends scientists or artists out to view and record the landscape of history, however, interaction with the environment is impossible.

Bush is the man we view this pan-chronological world through... from land-walking fish, to tyrannical lizards of yesteryear and to his modern day dystopia where America has crumbled and is now under leadership after leadership of tyrannical generals. Bush is a victim of Freud's oedipus complex: he's fixated on his mother and not on the best of terms with his father. When Bush learns of his mother's passing away, he joins his father in drinking binges even though he know at his father's frail age, the hooch will eventually kill him (half of the oedipus complex). Incest is a running theme though never actually consummated. This is definitely a chronological and psychological mindblow.

All goes very well for most of the book. The second half sees Bush go through military training to become a time-assassin and things get even more weird thereafter. You've really got to hunker down and concentrate on the mind time-traveling... Bush jumps to the immediate past of his own present and stops an action which is in action during his old present (umm, anyone get that?). Further into the last half, there are some more ongoings which really challenge your grip on the English language when it comes to the NOW, the PAST, the FUTURE and FATE. It's a big idea and it's pretty hard to grasp - but if you do, it's very rewarding!

5-stars for the mindblow but subtracting 1-star here for the internal logic of Bush which goes missing in the pages. Alliances change on his side and the "other" side, he was against him and now he's for him, and why exactly was he in training? Just a bit of the book is sketchy like this, but pick it up and read it for the big ideas!
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Top reviews from other countries

R. Rooksby
3.0 out of 5 stars Avoid the Faber Finds edition
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 25, 2017
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3 people found this helpful
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Christine Ellerbeck
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book and
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 16, 2018
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